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Vegetable Tanned Leather

Why you should choose vegetable tanned leather:

Tanned leather contains Hexavalent Chromium the +6 oxidation state of the element, a purely

manufactured form of the ore that is not found in nature and inherently more unstable than the
natural +3 oxidation state.

Once common throughout the tanning industry, as well as the automotive
industry, Cr(VI) has been labeled as a known human carcinogen by the EPA, the US Department of
Health and Human Services (DHHS), the IARC, and the WHO, and has become strictly regulated
—verging on outright banning.

Germany, in fact, went ahead and actually banned the oxide’s use in
leather goods, capping contamination at just 3 ppm, back in 2010.

The tanning industry poses many dangers to both the environment and those that work within it.
The primary environmental threat involves the dumping of solid and liquid waste that contains
leftover chromium and other hazardous compounds. This is commonplace in regions without strong
environmental protection standards.


Advantages of vegetable tanning:

  • Vegetable tanning is environmentally friendly; meaning any leather products that have been
    vegetable tanned can be recycled
  • Vegetable tanning is an age old tradition, so most tanneries have very skilled craftsmen producing
    and dyeing the leather
  • Due to the natural tannins used, vegetable tanned products are unique and have their own life, they
    are not the same for their entire life, but they change, continuously, for the better
  • The colors that vegetable tanning produces are rich and warm tones that look completely natural
    Vegetable tanned leathers are more valuable and thus sold at a higher average price compared to
    chrome tanned leathers
  • Raw materials used for vegetable tanning are natural tannins, available in liquid or powder form,
    obtained from different part of plants including woods, barks, fruits, fruit pods and leaves. The most
    common tannins are obtained from Chestnut wood (Castanea sativa), Quebracho wood (Schinopsis
    lorentzii), Tara pods (Caesalpinia spinosa), Catechu (Acacia Catechu), Chinese gallnut (Rhustyphina
    semialata), Turkish gallnut (Quercus infectoria), Gambier (Uncaria gambir), Mimosa or Wattle bark
    (Acacia meamsii), Myrobalan (Terminalia chebula), Oak wood (Quercus sp), Sumac (Rhustyphina
    coriaria) and Valonia Oak (Quercus macrolepis).